CES 2010: MIPS Technologies Demos World's First Android Set-top Box

A company called MIPS Technologies has successfully ported the Android OS to set top boxes for home entertainment.

MIPS Technologies has just announced a new lineup of demonstrations, partnerships and technologies aimed at making Android a viable platform for digital home devices such as set-top boxes, Blu-ray Disc players, DTVs and VoIP solutions. During International CES this week, MIPS and complementary solution providers are set up to demonstrate the world's first Android-based set-top boxes (STBs), Android running on an MIPS-Based netbook, the world's first social media center for Android-based embedded platforms, and other key technologies.

During CES, Western Mediabridge Inc., a Celrun Company and premier provider of integrated DTV broadcast end-to-end system solutions, and Sigma Designs, a provider of digital media processing SoC solutions for consumer electronics, will demonstrate the world's first commercially available Android set-top box. The MIPS-based STB features video-on-demand, ThinkFree Office (Word, Spreadsheet, Presentation) viewer software, web browser, remote control/keyboard interface and 1080p video quality. It was announced separately by Sigma Designs and Western Mediabridge very recently.

MIPS will also demonstrate a prototype of an Android-based IPTV set-top box developed by KDDI R&D Labs. Inc., a subsidiary company of Japanese telecommunications carrier KDDI. The set-top box supports IPTV set-top box functionality such as multicasting, video-on-demand (VOD), remote control user interface, and digital rights management (DRM) requirements. The prototype is based on the highly-integrated MIPS-Based SMP8654 media processors from Sigma Designs.

MIPS will also demonstrate the Lemote YeeLoong8089 netbook computer running Android, with browser capability and other applications. According to Lemote, the YeeLoong8089, powered by a MIPS-Based Loongson processor, is the world's first laptop that contains completely free software.

In addition, MIPS will demonstrate ConnecTV, a new licensable software solution from Home Jinni Inc., billed as the world's first social media center for Android-based embedded platforms. Home Jinni offers residential automation solutions for end-user programming and control of the digital home, including an Android application framework for building UPnP, DLNA and DPWS home area network applications, and an Android framework for integrating the home with IMS and service provider networks. ConnecTV enables consumers to search, discover, categorize and enjoy online media content directly from a TV, and to communicate and share with friends their living room. It also enables control and distribution of media content throughout the home itself.

Another key element in making Android viable for the digital home is the ability to customize user interfaces for the home user experience, which leverages a large screen and remote control. 'Android on MIPS' ecosystem partner KatDC, a company offering embedded Linux and Android-based UI and application solutions for portable and digital home products, will demonstrate the second generation of its solutions for TV menus, browser, photo application, DLNA, music, video and weather-running on a MIPS-Based platform from Sigma Designs.

MIPS recently completed optimizations of Android 2.0 for the MIPS32 architecture. The code is available in open source through the MIPSAndroid community. For more information about the Android platform and MIPS, or to access the full source code for MIPS Technologies' port of Android 2.0, including a reference binary and documentation, you can visit www.mips.com/android or email android@mips.com.

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